World News

COP28 – Brazil editor on extreme Amazon drought

Posted by: The Conversation

Date: Thursday, 23 November 2023

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In the Amazon, there is extreme drought. Wildlife is perishing. Life for many humans is getting more difficult. The level of water in the region’s rivers continues to fall and the outlook for the year ahead is bleak. This, as scientists, researchers and policy makers from all over the world head to Dubai next week for COP28, the United Nations Climate Change Conference.

Many of them will have an eye on the Amazon, trying to understand the causes and predict the consequences of the drought, but also to propose alternative approaches before it’s too late. Our new Brazilian edition of The Conversation is publishing a series of key commissions on the situation in the Amazon, a region that perhaps more than any other represents the health – and future – of the whole of humanity.

Among the articles produced by colleagues in recent weeks is this portrait – drawn by biologists Phillip Fearnside and Rosimeire Araújo, both from the Amazon Research Institute (INPA) – detailing the damage that the combination of unprecedented seasonal droughts and the El Niño phenomenon is bringing to the region’s riverside population. They look at what is likely to happen in the months, years and decades to come. And at what can change the course we are now on.

In the next few weeks we will have content in text and audio formats from our bureaux around the world, considering all aspects of COP28 and a climate emergency that is now a reality for communities across the planet.

Daniel Stycer

Editor, Rio de Janeiro

The largest tributary on the left bank of the Amazon, the Rio Negro is known for its paradisiacal landscapes, fresh, clean and abundant waters, where pink dolphins swim. Today, much of its riverbed around Manaus looks like this. AP Photo/Edmar Barros

Amazon region hit by trio of droughts in grim snapshot of the century to come

Philip Fearnside, Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas da Amazônia (INPA); Rosimeire Araújo Silva, Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas da Amazônia (INPA)

The drought is expected to affect the region until mid-2024 at the earliest. Signs of its severity include the lowest water levels in the city of Manaus in 121 years.

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Dr. Fikrejesus Amahazion at the XXIX International Rosa Luxemburg Conference in Berlin on January

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